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2018 MML Comprehensive Legislative Report - a complete listing of all bills  tracked by MML staff including a bill summary and current status (Updated 5/23/18).  


Watch the MML Lobbying Team discuss a wrap-up of the 2018 Missouri Legislative Session.  

 

 

Date: May 23, 2018

 

Second Session of the 99th General Assembly Adjourns

 

During the preceding four and a half months, MML's advocacy team has maintained a continual presence at the state Capitol, tracking more than 200 bills.

Our team actively advocated in support or opposition to many of these legislative measures. The team worked with legislators, state agency staff and industry representatives to seek the best legislative outcome possible for Missouri’s municipalities.

On the final day of the 2018 General Assembly, two key municipal issues were finally resolved: sending a motor fuel tax increase to the voters and prevailing wage reform. The session was marked by efforts to cut municipal revenues (a cap on local sales taxes and exemptions from municipal business licenses) and other proposals to micromanage municipal operations (restrictions on issuance of building permits, regulation of dogs and working animals, pre-emption of local zoning, voter approval for refuse-collection contracts and a municipal expenditure database mandate). Given all the potentially damaging proposals considered by the General Assembly, municipal interests fared relatively well.

Your many legislative contacts were key to our successes, and we thank you!
You are encouraged to discuss municipal issues with your legislators often before the General Assembly reconvenes in January 2019. Please feel free to contact us if we can assist.

 

 

Bills of Municipal Interest that Passed

 

Wireless (Small Cell) Infrastructure Deployment Bill

HB 1991establishes a process for wireless telecommunications providers to deploy small cell wireless facilities in the public rights of way. The Missouri Municipal League and the Municipal League of Metro St. Louis, with the assistance of our telecom legal consultant, Bill Ojile (Armstrong Teasdale), entered into negotiations with the wireless providers on the numerous provisions of this bill. Our challenge was to convince legislators and the wireless providers the necessity for municipal oversight and control of local public rights of way.

Although the best outcome would have been a complete defeat of HB 1991, that never was a realistic expectation given the broad bi-partisan support for HB 1991. However, the fruits of our negotiations did preserve important elements of local authority over the local rights of way. A complete summary of the Truly Agreed to and Finally Passed version ofHB 1991 can be found here.
Some of the provisions of the bill include:

  • An application fee for the collocation of a small wireless facility of $100 per antenna;
  • An application fee for modification or replacement of a pole of $500;
  • An annualpole attachment fee of $150;
  • Municipal utilities are exempt from the provisions of the law;
  • By Dec. 31, 2018, the Missouri Department of Revenue shall report to the General Assembly on the amount of revenue collected by local governments from communication services, such asdirect-to-home satellite service, and video service providers from the previous three fiscal years;
  • The Act becomes effective Jan. 1, 2019;
  • The Act expires Jan. 1, 2021.

 

Motor Fuel Tax Increase
HB 1460
was Truly Agreed to and Finally Passed on the last day of the legislative session. In addition to other tax provisions in the bill, HB 1460;

  • Increases the state's motor fuel tax by $.10 from $.17 per gallonin increments of 2.5 cents a year over four years,bringing the state fuel tax to $.27 per gallon;
  • The additional revenue generated by the tax increase will be used to fund the State Highway Patrol, taking the agency out of the Highway Trust Fund.
  • Carving out of the Highway Patrol from the Highway Trust Fund to provide the Missouri Department of Transportation an additional $280,000,000 annually, when fully implemented, to match federal funds;
  • Municipalities will receive an additional $60,000,000 annually in revenue, when fully implemented, to fund local transportation projects;
  • The motor fuel tax increase must be approved by the voters at the Nov.6, 2018, general election.

 

Prevailing Wage
Passed on the final day of the legislative session, HB 1729 makes several major alterations to Missouri's prevailing wage law. The bill:

  • Exempts public projects under $75,000 from the provisions of the prevailing wage law;
  • The prevailing wage will be determined for occupations where at least 1,000 hours have been reported to the Missouri Department of Labor Standards from projects occurring in the county where the prevailing request is located;
  • If 1,000 hours have not been reported for an occupation, then the prevailing wage will be determined by using 120 percent of the average minimum wage for an occupation as determined by the Missouri Department of Economic Development.
  • The bill also requires employees working on public works projects to receive double time for working on Sundays and holidays and time and a half for work performed over forty hours a week.

 

Motor Vehicle Sales Tax Extension Election
SB 773 extends the date by which a local taxing jurisdiction must place a question on the ballot regarding the repeal of the local sales tax on motor vehicles and trailers purchased from out-of-state dealers. The date has been extended from November 2018 to November 2022.

 

Emergency Communications - E-911
HB 1456
changes the laws regarding funding for emergency 911 services, administration of 911 funding, Missouri 911 Service Board membership, and the cooperation and contracting between emergency services providers.

 

Whistleblower Protection Expanded to Include Municipalities
SB 1007 Under current law, state employees are permitted to disclose information that relates to the violation of law, mismanagement, or waste of funds within a state agency without fear of disciplinary action being taken for such disclosure. SB 1007 expands that protection to all public employees (including municipal employees). The bill also broadens the scope of entities that a public employee can discuss information with to include prosecuting and circuit attorneys, law enforcement agencies, news media, and the public.

 

Historic Preservation Tax Credits
SB 590
lowers the current $140 million annual cap on historic preservation tax credits to $90 million with authorization for an additional $30 million to be targeted to low income census tracts.

 

Municipal Court Reform
HB 2562 - The bill provides that:

  • A court that serves more than one municipality shall be treated as a single municipal court.
  • No municipal judge, municipal court personnel, or any prosecutor designated
    by the municipality or personnel assigned thereto shall supervise or have authority to hire, fire, or discipline any probation officer or probation personnel assigned by the
    municipality to perform the duties of probation or parole.
  • Any notice to appear, citation, or summons on a minor traffic violation shall include the date and time the defendant is to appear in court. Failure toprovide such date and time shall render such notice to appear, citation, or summons void.

 

Bill of Municipal Interest that Failed

 

Failure to Appear
SB 553 - Repeals and modifies municipal court provisions enacted into law in 2015 (SB 5) and
2016 (SB 572).
SB 692
- Repeals and modifies municipal court provisions enacted into law in 2015 (SB 5) and
2016 (SB 572).

 

Business/Occupation License Preemption
HB 1587 -
Restricts municipalities from adopting any new business/occupation license requirements and fees. Capped existing fees to $25.

 

Open Meeting and Record Law
HB 2523 -
Increased fines for violation of the Open Meetings and Records and Record Retention Laws to $10,000, plus attorney fees.

 

Tax Increment Financing - A number of bills were introduced that severely restricted the use of tax increment financing by municipalities. Fortunately, none of these bills passed. We expect continued attack on this important local economic development tool next legislative session.

 

Building Permit Preemption
HB 1510 - Building permits would be deemed approved if not acted upon in five days. A municipality would be assessed a $5,000 civil penalty for each violation.

 

Short-term Rentals of Residential Dwellings
HB 2457
- Prohibits municipality from imposing a fee or enacting an ordinance that prohibits short-term residential dwelling rentals.

 

Residential Dwelling Inspections
HB 1510 - Prohibits municipalities from adopting or enforcing a residential property licensing ordinance that includes a requirement for periodic interior inspections of privately-owned
residential property.

 

Municipal Expenditure Database Mandate
HB 2242 - Requires municipalities to provide to the state treasurer information on municipal expenditures and the vendors whom payments are made. Failure to comply with this requirement would result in a fine of $100 per day.

 

Voter Approval of Municipal Refuse Collection Contracts
HB 2097 - Requires voter approval of municipal residential solid waste collection contracts.

 

Municipal Breed Specific Dog Regulations
HB 1398 -
Prohibits municipalities from enforcing or enacting a breed-specific dog ordinance.

 

Work Animals
S
B 918 - Restricts municipalities from prohibiting the use of work animals or prohibiting their use on public streets.

 

Preemption of Local Regulations of Autonomous Vehicles
SB 811 -
Prohibits municipalities from levying taxes and requirements on self-driving vehicles.

 

 

 

Date: April 27, 2018

 

Municipal Court Legislation
The Senate perfected a  floor substitute (SS) for Senate Committee Substitute (SCS) for SB 553 on Thursday. SS/SCS/SB 553 is a scaled-back version of the original bill, that faced stiff opposition in the Senate. This new version allows municipal judges to order community service, issue a fine or place a hold on their licenses for defendants failing to appear for a court date.SS/SCS/SB 553 must have one more vote in the Senate before moving to the House.

 

 

Open Meetings and Records Law
House Committee Substitute (HCS) for HB 2523 & 2524gives the Missouri Attorney General subpoena power to question those accused of violating the Sunshine Law. It raises the fine for “knowingly” violating the law from a minimum of $500 up to $10,000, plus attorney’s fees, and would be classified as a Class B misdemeanor. For violations that were not “knowingly” violated the fine would be raised to $1,000. The bill now heads to the Senate where it awaits further consideration.
Status: HCS/HB 2523 &2524 passed the House on Thursday, April19. The House Judiciary Committee incorporatedtheprovisions inHCS/HB 2523 &2524into a House Committee Substitutefor SB 966.

 

 

Preemption of MunicipalOccupation Licenses

As amended on the floor of House by Rep. Helms HB 1261 prohibits municipalities from licensing any "occupation or profession" that is licensed by the state of Missouri. The bill does allow municipalities to issue business licenses. However, many cities refer to their business licenses as occupation licenses (either in the charter or by ordinance). HB 1261 may cause unintended consequences relating to liquor licenses and municipalities that refer to their business license system as occupation licenses.
Status: HB 1261 passed the House on Tuesday, April 17. The Senate Professional Registration Committeewill conduct a hearing scheduled for Monday at 2:00 p.m.

 

 

Restrictions on Issuance of Building Permits
HB 2451 (Rep. Cross) requires municipalities to review, inspect and eitherapprove or deny anapplication fora residential building permit within five days ofsubmission. Building permits are deemed approved if notacted uponwithin the mandated five-day time period. Occupancypermits must be acted upon one dayafter submission of an application. HB2451 also allows an applicant for building and occupancy permits to hirean engineer or architect to conduct the required inspections of a residential structure.A municipality must accept the finding of the applicant's engineer or architect.
Status: House Professional Registration and Licensing Committee held a hearing on HB2451March 28.

 

 

Wireless (Small Cell) Infrastructure Deployment Bill

SCS/HCS/HB 1991
Establishes a process for wireless telecommunications providers to deploy small cell wireless facilities throughout the state.
Status:HCS/HB 1991 passed the House on March 13 witha number of changesproposed by MML. The Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and Environment Committee held a hearing on HCS/HB 1991 and voted out a Senate Committee substitute, SCS/HCS/HB 1991with a "Do Pass" recommendation. The bill now moves to the Senate floor for debate by the full Senate.

SB 837 (Sen. Rowden)
Similar to HB 1991
Status: Hearing conducted by the Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and the Environment Committee on Feb. 7. The committee voted out SB 837 to the Senate floor, without amendments, with a "Do Pass" recommendation. SB 837 is on the Senate Informal Calendar.

 

 

911Emergency Services
HB 1456 changes the law regarding funding of 911 emergency services.
Status: The Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and Environment Committee reported
HB 1456 out of committee with a "Do Pass" recommendation on April 11.

 

 

Date: April 20, 2018

 

Preemption of Municipal Occupation Licenses

As amended on the floor of House by Rep. Helms HB 1261 prohibits municipalities from licensing any "occupation or profession" that is licensed by the state of Missouri. The bill does allow municipalities to issue business licenses. However, many cities refer to their business licenses as occupation licenses (either in the charter or by ordinance). HB 1261 may cause unintended consequences relating to liquor licenses and municipalities that refer to their business license system as occupation licenses.
Status: HB 1261 passed the House on Tuesday, April 17. The bill has beenreferred to the Senate Professional Registration Committee.

 

Open Meetings and Records Law
House Committee Substitute (HCS) for HB 2523 & 2524gives the Missouri Attorney General subpoena power to question those accused of violating the Sunshine Law. It raises the fine for “knowingly” violating the law from a minimum of $500 up to $10,000, plus attorney’s fees, and would be classified as a Class B misdemeanor. For violations that were not “knowingly” violated the fine would be raised to $1,000. The bill now heads to the Senate where it awaits further consideration.
Status: HCS/HB 2523 &2524 passed the House on Thursday, April19.

 


Restrictions on Issuance of Building Permits
The House Professional Registration and Licensing Committee held a hearing on HB 2451 (Rep. Cross) on Wednesday, March 28. HB 2451 requires municipalities to review, inspect and eitherapprove or deny anapplication fora residential building permit within five days ofsubmission. Building permits are deemed approved if notacted uponwithin the mandated five-day time period. Occupancypermits must be acted upon one dayafter submission of an application.
HB2451 also allows an applicant for building and occupancy permits to hirean engineer or architect to conduct the required inspections of a residential structure.A municipality must accept the finding of the applicant's engineer or architect.
TheProfessional Registration and Licensing Committee members were very receptive to the sponsor and his witnesses in support of the bill. In turn, the committee was hostile toward witnesses in opposition toHB 2451.


Action:
Urge yourrepresentativeto oppose HB 2451and any similar amendment to other bills.

Talking Points:

  • Inform your representativeabout the importance of the yourmunicipality's building inspection program;
  • Highlight how your municipality works with builders to streamline and expedite issuance of building permits;
  • Diplomatically, tellyour representatives of problems your municipalityhas had with builders and developers;
  • Stress the safety elements ofresidential building and occupancy codes and inspections;
  • Not all engineers and architects are familiar with the provisions of residential building codes;
  • Athird-party inspector works for the builder, not the citizens of themunicipality;
  • Mention that the municipal employee whosigns and issues building permits could be held personally liable if a third-party inspector hired by a builder did not correctly or adequately inspect the residential structure.When issuing the permit, the municipal employee is certifyingthat the structuremeets all building code requirements.

 

Wireless (Small Cell) Infrastructure Deployment Bill


SCS/HCS/HB 1991
Establishes a process for wireless telecommunications providers to deploy small cell wireless facilities throughout the state.
Status:HCS/HB 1991 passed the House on March 13 witha number of changesproposed by MML. The Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and Environment Committee held a hearing on HCS/HB 1991 and voted out a Senate Committee substitute, SCS/HCS/HB 1991with a "Do Pass" recommendation. The bill now moves to the Senate floor for debate by the full Senate.

SB 837 (Sen. Rowden)
Similar to HB 1991
Status: Hearing conducted by the Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and the Environment Committee on Feb. 7. The committee voted out SB 837 to the Senate floor, without amendments, with a "Do Pass" recommendation. SB 837 is on the Senate Informal Calendar.

 

 

Short Term Rental in Residential Neighborhoods

HB 2457 (Rep. Anderson) prohibits political subdivisions from imposing a fee or enacting an ordinance that prohibits the short-term rental of a residential dwelling.
Status: The House General Laws Committee voted out a committee substitute for HB 2457 with a "Do Pass" recommendation on March 13. Referred to the House Rules-Legislative Oversight Committee.

 

 

911Emergency Services
HB 1456 changes the law regarding funding of 911 emergency services.
Status: Passed the House on March 3. Referred to the Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and Environment Committee. Hearing held on Wednesday, March 28.

 

 

Freedom to Choose Trash Collection Act

HB 2097 (Rep. Brattin) requires voters to approve residential solid waste collection contracts, except in Kansas City, North Kansas City and St. Louis. Solid waste collection is an essential public health activity customarily provided by municipalities. MML opposes HB 2097.
Status: The House Special Committee on Government Oversightheld a hearing on HB 2097 on Feb. 27.The bill was reported out of committee with a "Do Pass" recommendation and referred to the House Rules- Administrative Oversight Committee.

 

 

Municipal Court Legislation
The Senate Judiciary Committee voted a Senate Committee Substitute Bill (SCS) for SB 553 out of committee on Feb. 22 with a "Do Pass": recommendation. SCS/SB 553 addresses many of the concerns from law enforcement and municipal courts resulting from the passage of SB 5 (2015) and SB 572 (2016).
Status: Voted out of the Senate Judiciary Committee with a "Do Pass" recommendation. Currently on the SenateInformalCalendar awaiting debate.

SB 692 (Sen. Emery) also addresses many of the concerns created by the passage of SB 5 (2015) and SB 572 (2016).
Status: The Senate Local Government and Elections Committee conducted a hearingon SB 692 Feb. 13.A substitute bill (SCS/SB 692) was voted out of committee with a "Do Pass" recommendation.

 

 

Sale of Water, Wastewater, Gas Systems in Fourth Class Cities

HCS/HB 1947- Currently, fourth class cities may only sell their interest in a municipally-owned utility when ratified by a two-thirds vote. This bill lowers the voter-approval threshold for the sale of a water or wastewater system, or a gas plant, to a majority vote.
Status: HCS/HB 1947 passed the House on March 7. A hearing was held before theSenate Local Government and Elections Committee onTuesday, March 27.HCS/HB1947 wasvoted out of committeewith a "Do Pass" recommendation on Thursday, March 29.

Similarly, SCS/SB 658lowers the voter-approval threshold for the sale of a water or wastewater system, or a gas plant, by such cities to a majority vote. It also requires that the Board of Aldermen shall hold a public meeting at least 30 days prior to any such vote.

Status: SCS/SB 658 voted "Do Pass" by Senate Local Government and Elections Committee.
The water, wastewater and gas provisionsin HCS/HB 1947 has also been added toSB 704.

 

 

Missouri Municipal Government Expenditure Database
HB 2242(Rep. Wiemann) establishes the "Missouri Municipal Government Expenditure Database," to be maintained by State Treasurer Eric Schmitt.
Status: Ahearing was held on February 7 before theHouse Local Government committee. MML,Municipal League of Metro St Louis, and the city of Moberly testified in opposition. Testifying in favor was the State Treasurer's office, the Show-Me Institute, and the New Century Foundation.

 

 

 

Prevailing Wage Bills
SB 555 (Sen. Brown) repeals the prevailing wage law.
Status: Currently on the Senate Informal Calendar for Perfection.
SB 599 (Sen. Schatz) exempts publicconstruction project of $500,000 or less from prevailing wage.
Status: Currently on the Senate Informal Calendar for Perfection.
SB 688 (Sen. Sater) was voted "do pass"out of the Senate General Laws Committee. This bill exempts maintenance and repair from prevailing wage.
Status: SB 555, SB 599 and SB 688 have been voted out of the Senate General Laws Committee with a "Do Pass" recommendation.
SB 555 and SB 599 are on the Senate Calendar awaiting floor debate.

The House Economic Development Committee heldhearingson HB 1436 (Rep.
Love), HB 1621 (Rep. Rehder) and HB 1729 (Rep.Justus). All these billsrepeal prevailing wage.
Status:HCS/HB 1729 was voted "Do Pass" by the House Rules Committee for Legislative Oversight. The bill passed the House on March 13 and was referred to the Senate General Laws Committee. A hearing was held on Wednesday, March 28.

 

 

Historic Preservation Tax Credits

Caps historic preservation tax credits at $90 million and the Missouri Department of Economic Developmentshall authorize an additional $30 million in historic preservation tax credits in low income areas.
Status: Senate Committee Substitute (SCS) for SB 590 passed the Senate andwas heard in theHouse Special Committee on Government Oversight on Wednesday, April 18.

 

Date: April 6, 2018

 

Preemption of Municipal Business and Occupation Licenses

As amended on the floor of House by Rep. Helms (sponsor of HB 1587) HB 1261 prohibits municipalities from licensing any "occupation or profession" that is licensed by the state of Missouri. The bill does allow municipalities to issue business licenses. However, many cities refer to their business licenses as occupation licenses (either in the charter or by ordinance). HB 1261 may cause unintended consequences relating to liquor licenses and municipalities that refer to their business license system as occupation licenses.
Status: HB 1261 was perfected on Wednesday, April 4, is awaiting passage in the House.
Action
:contact your state representative to urge them to vote NO on House Bill 1261 when it comes up for third reading.


HB 1587 (Rep. Helms) prohibits municipalities from enacting any new occupation/business licenses and caps existing licenses at twenty-five dollars per year.
Status:
HB 1587has been assigned to the House Rules - Administrative Oversight Committee. No action was taken this week.

 


Private Wells in Municipalities Must be Allowed
HB 1442, as amended on the House floor, prohibits municipalities from restricting the use of private wells.
Status: HB 1442 passed the House and was voted out of the Senate Local Government Committee with a "Do Pass Recommendation".
Action:Contact your Senator and ask them to remove the private well provision from HB 1442.

 

Open Meetings and Records Law
House Committee Substitute (HCS) for HB 2523 & 2524 makes substantial changes to the penalty provisions of the open meetings and records law and increases the Missouri Attorney General's ability to prosecute violations of the law.

Status: HCS/HB 2523 &2524 was voted out of the House General Laws Committee on Wednesday, April 4, with a "Do Pass" recommendation. MML and the Missouri School Board Association are currently negotiating with the Missouri Press Association to remove the harmful provisions of this bill.

 


Restrictions on Issuance of Building Permits
The House Professional Registration and Licensing Committee held a hearing on HB 2451 (Rep. Cross) on Wednesday, March 28. HB 2451 requires municipalities to review, inspect and eitherapprove or deny anapplication fora residential building permit within five days ofsubmission. Building permits are deemed approved if notacted uponwithin the mandated five-day time period. Occupancypermits must be acted upon one dayafter submission of an application.
HB2451 also allows an applicant for building and occupancy permits to hirean engineer or architect to conduct the required inspections of a residential structure.A municipality must accept the finding of the applicant's engineer or architect.
TheProfessional Registration and Licensing Committee members were very receptive to the sponsor and his witnesses in support of the bill. In turn, the committee was hostile toward witnesses in opposition toHB 2451.


Action:
Contactyourrepresentativetoinform them that this bill is pending in theProfessional Registration and Licensing Committee and urge them to opposeHB 2451and any similar amendment to other bills.

Talking Points:

  • Inform your representativeabout the importance of the yourmunicipality's building inspection program;
  • Highlight how your municipality works with builders to streamline and expedite issuance of building permits;
  • Diplomatically, tellyour representatives of problems your municipalityhas had with builders and developers;
  • Stress the safety elements ofresidential building and occupancy codes and inspections;
  • Not all engineers and architects are familiar with the provisions of residential building codes;
  • Athird-party inspector works for the builder, not the citizens of themunicipality and may beinclined to misinterpret the provisions of the building code;
  • Mention that the municipal employee whosigns and issues building permits could be held personally liable if a third-party inspector hired by a builder did not correctly or adequately inspect the residential structure.When issuing the permit, the municipal employee is certifyingthat the structuremeets all building code requirements.

 

Wireless (Small Cell) Infrastructure Deployment Bill

SCS/HCS/HB 1991
Establishes a process for wireless telecommunications providers to deploy small cell wireless facilities throughout the state.
Status:HCS/HB 1991 passed the House on March 13 witha number of changesproposed by MML. The Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and Environment Committee held a hearing on HCS/HB 1991 and voted out a Senate Committee substitute, SCS/HCS/HB 1991with a "Do Pass" recommendation. The bill now moves to the Senate floor for debate by the full Senate.

SB 837 (Sen. Rowden)
Similar to HB 1991
Status: Hearing conducted by the Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and the Environment Committee on Feb. 7. The committee voted out SB 837 to the Senate floor, without amendments, with a "Do Pass" recommendation. SB 837 is on the Senate Informal Calendar.

 

 

Short Term Rental in Residential Neighborhoods

HB 2457 (Rep. Anderson) prohibits political subdivisions from imposing a fee or enacting an ordinance that prohibits the short-term rental of a residential dwelling.
Status: Hearing held on Feb. 27 in the House General Laws Committee. Referred to the House Rules-Legislative Oversight Committee. Referred to House Rules-Legislative Oversight.

 

 

911Emergency Services
HB 1456 changes the law regarding funding of 911 emergency services.
Status: Passed the House on March 3. Referred to the Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and Environment Committee. Hearing held on Wednesday, March 28.

 

 

Freedom to Choose Trash Collection Act

HB 2097 (Rep. Brattin) requires voters to approve residential solid waste collection contracts, except in Kansas City, North Kansas City and St. Louis. Solid waste collection is an essential public health activity customarily provided by municipalities. MML opposes HB 2097.
Status: The House Special Committee on Government Oversightheld a hearing on HB 2097 on Feb. 27.The bill was reported out of committee with a "Do Pass" recommendation and referred to the House Rules- Administrative Oversight Committee.

 

 

Municipal Court Legislation
The Senate Judiciary Committee voted a Senate Committee Substitute Bill (SCS) for SB 553 out of committee on Feb. 22 with a "Do Pass": recommendation. SCS/SB 553 addresses many of the concerns from law enforcement and municipal courts resulting from the passage of SB 5 (2015) and SB 572 (2016).
Status: Voted out of the Senate Judiciary Committee with a "Do Pass" recommendation. Currently on the SenateInformalCalendar awaiting debate.

SB 692 (Sen. Emery) also addresses many of the concerns created by the passage of SB 5 (2015) and SB 572 (2016).
Status: The Senate Local Government and Elections Committee conducted a hearingon SB 692 Feb. 13.A substitute bill (SCS/SB 692) was voted out of committee with a "Do Pass" recommendation.

 

 

Sale of Water, Wastewater, Gas Systems in Fourth Class Cities

HCS/HB 1947- Currently, fourth class cities may only sell their interest in a municipally-owned utility when ratified by a two-thirds vote. This bill lowers the voter-approval threshold for the sale of a water or wastewater system, or a gas plant, to a majority vote.
Status: HCS/HB 1947 passed the House on March 7. A hearing was held before theSenate Local Government and Elections Committee onTuesday, March 27.HCS/HB1947 wasvoted out of committeewith a "Do Pass" recommendation on Thursday, March 29.

Similarly, SCS/SB 658lowers the voter-approval threshold for the sale of a water or wastewater system, or a gas plant, by such cities to a majority vote. It also requires that the Board of Aldermen shall hold a public meeting at least 30 days prior to any such vote.

Status: SCS/SB 658 voted "Do Pass" by Senate Local Government and Elections Committee.
The water, wastewater and gas provisionsin HCS/HB 1947 has also been added toSB 704 and House Committee Bill (HCB) 23.

 

 

Missouri Municipal Government Expenditure Database
HB 2242(Rep. Wiemann) establishes the "Missouri Municipal Government Expenditure Database," to be maintained by State Treasurer Eric Schmitt.
Status: Ahearing was held on February 7 before theHouse Local Government committee. MML,Municipal League of Metro St Louis, and the city of Moberly testified in opposition. Testifying in favor was the State Treasurer's office, the Show-Me Institute, and the New Century Foundation.

 

 

 

Prevailing Wage Bills
SB 555 (Sen. Brown) repeals the prevailing wage law.
Status: Currently on the Senate Informal Calendar for Perfection.
SB 599 (Sen. Schatz) exempts publicconstruction project of $500,000 or less from prevailing wage.
Status: Currently on the Senate Informal Calendar for Perfection.
SB 688 (Sen. Sater) was voted "do pass"out of the Senate General Laws Committee. This bill exempts maintenance and repair from prevailing wage.
Status: SB 555, SB 599 and SB 688 have been voted out of the Senate General Laws Committee with a "Do Pass" recommendation.
SB 555 and SB 599 are on the Senate Calendar awaiting floor debate.

The House Economic Development Committee heldhearingson HB 1436 (Rep.
Love), HB 1621 (Rep. Rehder) and HB 1729 (Rep.Justus). All these billsrepeal prevailing wage.
Status:HCS/HB 1729 was voted "Do Pass" by the House Rules Committee for Legislative Oversight. The bill passed the House on March 13 and was referred to the Senate General Laws Committee. A hearing was held on Wednesday, March 28.

 

 

Historic Preservation Tax Credits

Caps historic preservation tax credits at $90 million and modifies several other provisions of the law.
Status: Senate Committee Substitute (SCS) for SB 590 passed the Senate and sent over to the House. The bill has been referred to the House General Laws Committee. a hearing is scheduled for Monday, April 9 at 5 p.m.

House Committee Bill (HCB) 18 was voted out of the House Economic DevelopmentCommitteeon Thursday, March 29. HCB 18 severely restricts Historic Preservation Tax Credits.

 

 

 

 

Date: March 2, 2018

Short Term Rental in Residential Neighborhoods

HB 2457 (Rep. Anderson) prohibits political subdivisions from imposing a fee or enacting an ordinance that prohibits short term rental of residential dwelling.

Status: Hearing held on Tuesday, Feb. 27 in the House General Laws Committee.

Municipal Cable Television Franchise Fee Cap

HB 2616 ( Rep. Rhoads) sets municipal video (cable) franchise fees at one percent of gross receipts.

Status: Introduced on Wednesday, February 28. Awaiting committee assignment.
911Emergency Services
HB 1456 changes the law regarding funding of 911 emergency services.
Status: A substitute bill, HCS/ HB 1456, was voted out of the House Crime Prevention and Public Safety Committee with a “Do Pass’ recommendation. HCS/HB 1456 requires municipalities to competitively bid public safety related information technology serves. This provision would make if difficult for municipalities to consolidate services withneighboring public entities.
The bill's sponsor, Rep. Lauer, offered a floor amendment to remove the bidding requirement. That amendment passed and the bill was perfected with no other amendments. The bill requires one more vote before moving to the Senate.

Freedom to Choose Trash Collection Act

HB 2097 (Rep. Brattin) requires voters to approve residential solid waste collection contracts, except in Kansas City, North Kansas City and St. Louis. Solid waste collection is an essential public health activity customarily provided by municipalities. MML opposes HB 2097.

Status: The House Special Committee on Government Oversightheld a hearing on HB 2097 on Tuesday, Feb. 27.

Municipal Court Legislation
The Senate Judiciary Committee voted a senate committee substitute bill (SCS) for SB553 out of committee on Feb. 22 with a "Do Pass: recommendation. SCS/SB 553 addresses many of the concerns from law enforcement and municipal courts resulting from the passage of SB 5 (2015) and SB 572 (2016).
The committee substitute bill:
  • removes the requirement that notice to abate a nuisance be given to the occupant of a rental;
  • allows a notice for demolition of unsafe structure to be deliveredby private delivery service, in addition to certified mail, personal service and publication;
  • repeals current law prohibiting a person from serving as a municipal judge in more than five municipalities;
  • alters the term "annual general operating revenue," as applied in provisions regarding the assessment of fines in minor traffic violation and municipal ordinance violation cases to exclude revenue derived from taxes that are designated for specific purposes by Missouri Constitution (municipal gas tax), state statutes (capital improvement sales tax, economic development sales tax, fire protection sales tax, parks and storm water sales tax and public safety sales tax) and federal law (grants);
  • removes monetary fine limits for traffic and municipal ordinance violations;
  • allows cities to file a statement with the state Auditor confirming that twenty percent or less of their general revenue comes from fines, bond forfeitures and court costs, instead of the current requirement mandating a detailed financial statement be filed;
  • repeals current law that prohibits cities from assessing defendants a fee for community service.
SB 692 (Sen. Emery) also addresses many of the concerns created by the passage of SB 5 (2015) and SB 572 (2016).
The bill modifies the definition of the terms "annual general operating revenue" and "minor traffic violation" as applied in provisions regarding the assessment of fines in minor traffic violation and municipal ordinance violation cases. "Annual general operating revenue" now includes, rather than excludes, designated sales or use taxes, restricted user fees, grant funds, funds expended for technological assistance and other revenue designated for a specific purpose. The term "minor traffic violation" now excludes, rather than includes, amended charges.

Increases municipal fines and court costs to $500, rather than $225, in minor traffic violations. For multiple municipal ordinance violations committed within a 12-month period, a court shall not assess a fine and court costs more than $300 for second offense ordinance violations, rather than $275, $400 for third offense ordinance violations, rather than $350, and $500 for fourth and subsequent ordinance violations, rather than $450. SB 692 repeals certain exemptions from paying court costs in minor traffic violations and municipal ordinance violations for defendants who are indigent.

This bill also reinstates the previous 30 percent limitation on municipal income that was lowered to 20 percent in 2016 by SB 5, except in St. Louis County, where the limitation remains at 12.5 percent.

Finally, the bill repeals provisions that establish procedures to dissolve a municipal government when it fails to remit the revenue collected from certain fines, penalties, and forfeitures more than 20 percent to the Department of Revenue.

Status: The Senate Local Government and Elections Committee conducted a hearing for SB 692 Feb. 13. No action taken.Several provisions of SB 692 have been incorporated into SCS/SB 553.

Sale of Water, Wastewater, Gas Systems in Fourth Class Cities

HCS/HB 1947- Currently, fourth class cities may only sell their interest in a municipally-owned utility when ratified by a two-thirds vote. This bill lowers the voter-approval threshold for the sale of a water or wastewater system, or a gas plant, to a majority vote.

Similarly, SCS/SB 658lowers the voter-approval threshold for the sale of a water or wastewater system, or a gas plant, by such cities to a majority vote. It also requires that the Board of Aldermen shall hold a public meeting at least 30 days prior to any such vote.

Status: SCS/SB 658SCS voted "Do Pass" by Senate Local Government and Elections Committee.
HCS/HB 1947 was perfected on Wednesday with a House amendment that added a public hearing requirement. The bill moves to the third reading calendar, awaiting final passage in the House.
Tax Increment Financing Legislation
SB 859 (Sen. Koenig) a hearing was conducted in the Senate Economic Development Committee on Tuesday. This bill modifies local tax increment financing projects by limiting such projects to redevelopment areas that are found to be blighted. It also provides that a redevelopment area shall not be found to be blighted without a study conducted by a party other than the municipality and developer which details how the redevelopment area meets the definition of "blighted area".

This bill narrows the definition of "blighted area"; and,modifies the definition of "redevelopment plan" and "redevelopment area" to provide that such definitions shall not include "conservation areas" or "economic development areas" and prohibits new projects from being authorized in any greenfield area.

Status:A hearing was conducted in the Senate Economic Development Committee on Feb.20.

Wireless Facilities Infrastructure Bill

Working with our telecom working group, League staff identified the major areas of concern in the wireless deployment bills introduced this session. MML partnered with the Municipal League of Metro St. Louis, hiring an expert outside legal counsel and along with our lobbying firm negotiated with the wireless providers on these bills.

The resulting compromise bills represent numerous hours of conference calls, meetings with the bill sponsors and committee chairs, and negotiations between telecom providers and MML.

While the providers and cities have worked very hard to reach this compromise; both acknowledge it is a fluid process that is subject to change, especially as it relates to rates and fees.

HB 1991 and SB 837 Establishes a process for wireless telecommunications providers to deploy small cell wireless facilities throughout the state.

HB 1991 (Rep. Rhoads)
Status: The House Utilities Committee voted out a committee substitute bill (HCS) for HB 1991 on Feb. 12. The committee reported HCS/HB 1991 to the House floor with a “Do Pass” recommendation. A number of the changes made by the committee are amendments proposed by MML.

SB 837 (Sen. Rowden)
Status: Hearing conducted by the Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and the Environment Committee on Feb. 7. The committee voted out SB 837 to the Senate floor, without amendments, with a "Do Pass" recommendation.

Talking Points:
Municipalities must retain management and oversight of the rights of way (ROW) to insure:
o streets and sidewalks are not obstructed and are maintained in a safe manner;
o that essential public utilities are not damaged or adversely affected;
o that use of ROW remains nondiscriminatory, with no special privileges granted to one type of ROW user;
o municipal taxes and fees are preserved; and
o fees for use of municipal poles and structures in the ROW fairly compensate municipalities for the cost of inspections and maintenance of those facilities.

Missouri Municipal Government Expenditure Database
HB 2242(Rep. Wiemann) establishes the "Missouri Municipal Government Expenditure Database," to be maintained by State Treasurer Eric Schmitt. The database must include extensive information about a given municipality's expenditures and the vendors to whom payments were made. Municipalities with websites must provide a link to the database. A municipality must provide the information to State Treasurer Eric Schmitt on a quarterly basis or be fined $100 per day. The fine will be collected by offsetting sales and use tax distributions due to the municipality and will be distributed to the schools of the county.

Status: Ahearing was held on February 7 before theHouse Local Government committee. MML,Municipal League of Metro St Louis, and the city of Moberly testified in opposition. Testifying in favor was the State Treasurer's office, the Show-Me Institute, and the New Century Foundation.

Talking Points:
  • HB 2242 singles out municipalities and should include all public entities, such as the state of Missouri, counties and special districts.
  • HB 2242 is an unfunded mandate that cost cities and taxpayers more than just a “token” amount.
  • Again, despite the claims of bill supporters, it takes more than a “click” of a computer key to provide the excessive amount of information mandated by this bill.
Premption of Municipal Gross Receipts Tax and Occupation Licenses

HB 1587 (Rep. Helms) prohibits municipalities from enacting any new occupation/business licenses and caps existing licenses at twenty-five dollars per year. Most municipal utility/telecommunication gross receipts taxes are based on their business licensing authority, therefore, this bill would also prohibit new gross receipts taxes and cap current ones at the twenty-five dollar level.

Interestingly, this bill was not assigned to the House Local Government Committee, but placed in the House Professional Registration and Licensing Committee – not a committee normally assigned local government bills.


Status:HB 1587has been assigned to the House Rules - Administrative Oversight Committee. No action was taken this week.

Prevailing Wage Bills
SB 555 (Sen. Brown) repeal the prevailing wage law.
Status: Currently on the Senate informal Calendar for Perfection
SB 599 (Sen. Schatz) exempts publicconstruction project of $500,000 or less from prevailing wage.
Status: Currently on the Senate Informal Calendar for Perfection
SB 688 (Sen. Sater) was voted "do pass"out of the Senate General Laws Committee. This bill exempts maintenance and repair from prevailing wage.

The House Economic Development Committee heldhearingson HB 1436 (Rep.Love), HB 1621 (Rep. Rehder) and HB 1729 (Rep.Justus). All these billsrepeal prevailing wage.

Status:HCS/HB 1729 was voted "Do Pass" by the House Rules Committee for Legislative Oversight.

Action: Tell your representatives and senators how prevailing wage affects public work projects in your city.
Historic Preservation Tax Credits
The Senate Local Government and Elections Committee voted out a committee substitute for SB 590 . The Senate Committee Substitute (SCS) for SB 590 made three changes to the original bill.The substitute bill changed the cap from $50 million to $70 million (The current historic preservation tax credit cap is $140 million) ; retained the control of all historic preservation tax credits with the Department of Economic Development but added the provision to "consider" input from local municipalities; and prohibits tax creditsfor new non-income producing single-family, owner occupied residential projects.

Status: Placed on the Senate Calendar for Perfection; once the bill is perfected, it cannot be changed.

 

Date: February 23, 2018

 

 

Freedom to Choose Trash Collection Act

HB 2097 (Rep. Brattin) requires voters to approval residential solid waste collection contracts, except in Kansas City, North Kansas City and St. Louis. Solid waste collection is an essential public health activity customarily provided by municipalities. MML opposes HB 2097.

Status: The House Special Committee on Government Oversight will hold a hearing on HB 2097 on Tuesday, February 27 at 12:00 Noon in House Hearing Room 7.

 

Municipal Court Legislation
The Senate Judiciary Committee voted a senate committee substitute bill (SCS) for SB553 out of committee on Thursday with a "Do Pass: recommendation. SCS/SB 553 addresses many of the concerns from law enforcement and municipal courts from the passage of SB 5 (2015) and SB 572 (2016).
The committee substitute bill:

  • removes the requirement that a notice to abate a nuisance be given to the occupant of a renter;
  • allows a notice for demolition of an unsafe structures by private delivery service, in addition to certified mail, personal service and publication;
  • repeals current law prohibiting a person from serving as a municipal judge in more than five municipalities;
  • alters the term "annual general operating revenue," as applied in provisions regarding the assessment of fines in minor traffic violations and municipal ordinance violation cases to exclude revenue derived from taxes that are designated for specific purposes by Missouri Constitution (municipal gas tax), state statutes (capital improvement sales tax, economic development sales tax, fire protection sales tax, parks and storm water sales tax and public safety sales tax) and federal law (grants);
  • removes monetary fine limits for traffic and municipal ordinance violations;
  • allows cities to file a statement with the state Auditor confirming that twenty percent or less of their general revenue comes from fines, bond forfeitures and court costs, instead of the current requirement mandating a detailed financial statement be filed;
  • repeals current law that prohibits cities from assessing defendants a fee for community service.

SB 692 (Sen. Emery) also addresses many of the concerns created by the passage of SB 5 (2015) and SB 572 (2016).
The bill modifies the definition of the terms "annual general operating revenue" and "minor traffic violation" as applied in provisions regarding the assessment of fines in minor traffic violation and municipal ordinance violation cases. "Annual general operating revenue" now includes, rather than excludes, designated sales or use taxes, restricted user fees, grant funds, funds expended for technological assistance and other revenue designated for a specific purpose. The term "minor traffic violation" now excludes, rather than includes, amended charges.

Increase municipal fines and court costs to $500, rather than $225, in minor traffic violations. For multiple municipal ordinance violations committed within a 12-month period, a court shall not assess a fine and court costs more than $300 for second offense ordinance violations, rather than $275, $400 for third offense ordinance violations, rather than $350, and $500 for fourth and subsequent ordinance violations, rather than $450. SB 692 repeals certain exemptions from paying court costs in minor traffic violations and municipal ordinance violations for defendants who are indigent.

This bill also reinstates the previous 30 percent limitation on municipal income that was lowered to be 20 percent in 2016 by SB 5, except in St. Louis County, where the limitation remains at 12.5 percent.

Finally, the bill repeals provisions that establish procedures to dissolve a municipal government when it fails to remit the revenue collected from certain fines, penalties, and forfeitures more than 20 percent to the Department of Revenue.

Status: The Senate Local Government and Elections Committee conducted a hearing for SB 692 on Tuesday, February 13 . No action taken.Several provisions of SB 692 have been incorporated into SCS/SB 553.



 

Sale of Water, Wastewater, Gas Systems in Fourth Class Cities

HCS/HB 1947- Currently, fourth class cities may only sell their interest in a municipally-owned utility when ratified by a two-thirds vote. This bill lowers the voter-approval threshold for the sale of a water or wastewater system, or a gas plant, to a majority vote.

Similarly, SCS/SB 658lowers the voter-approval threshold for the sale of a water or wastewater system, or a gas plant, by such cities to a majority vote. It also requires that the Board of Aldermen shall hold a public meeting at least 30 days prior to any such vote.

Status: SCS/SB 658SCS voted "Do Pass" by Senate Local Government and Elections Committee.
HCS/HB 1947 voted "Do Pass" by the House Rules - Administrative Oversight Committee.

 

 

Tax Increment Financing Legislation
SB 859 (Sen. Koenig) a hearing was conducted in the Senate Economic Development Committee on Tuesday. This bill modifies local tax increment financing projects by limiting such projects to redevelopment areas that are found to be blighted. It also provides that a redevelopment area shall not be found to be blighted without a study conducted by a party other than the municipality and developer which details how the redevelopment area meets the definition of "blighted area".

This bill narrows the definition of "blighted area"andmodifies the definition of "redevelopment plan" and "redevelopment area" to provide that such definitions shall not include "conservation areas" or "economic development areas"; and prohibits new projects from being authorized in any greenfield area.

Status:A hearing was conducted in the Senate Economic Development Committee on Tuesday.

 

 

Wireless Facilities Infrastructure Bill
HB 1991 and SB 837 bills attempts to set up a process for wireless telecommunications providers to deploy small cell wireless facilities throughout the state.We are continuing to negotiatewith the sponsors and proponents to address municipal concerns.

HB 1991 (Rep. Rhoads)
Status: The House Utilities Committee voted out a committee substitute bill (HCS) for HB 1991 on Monday, February 12. The committee reported HCS/HB 1991 to the House floor with a “Do Pass” recommendation. A number of the changes made by the committee are amendments proposed by MML.

SB 837 (Sen. Rowden)
Status: Hearing conducted by the Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and the Environment Committee on February 7. The committee voted out SB 837 to the Senate floor, without amendments, with a "Do Pass" recommendation. The cable industry has floated languageto reduce the video franchise fees to 1 percent and may try to amend SB 837.

Talking Points:
Municipalities must retain management and oversight of the rights of way (ROW) to insure:
o streets and sidewalks are not obstructed and are maintained in a safe manner;
o that essential public utilities are not damaged or adversely affected;
o that use of ROW remains nondiscriminatory, with no special privileges granted to one type of ROW user;
o municipal taxes and fees are preserved; and
o fees for use of municipal poles and structures in the ROW fairly compensate municipalities for the cost of inspections and maintenance of those facilities.

Action: Urge your representatives and senators to protect municipal management over the ROW and to support MML amendments when they come up on the floor. Also, urge your representatives and senators to oppose any amendments that limit or eliminate municipal video franchise fees.

 

 

 

Missouri Municipal Government Expenditure Database
HB 2242(Rep. Wiemann) establishes the "Missouri Municipal Government Expenditure Database," to be maintained by State Treasurer Eric Schmitt. The database must include extensive information about a given municipality's expenditures and the vendors to whom payments were made. Municipalities with websites must provide a link to the database. A municipality must provide the information to State Treasurer Eric Schmitt on a quarterly basis or be fined $100 per day. The fine will be collected by offsetting sales and use tax distributions due to the municipality and will be distributed to the schools of the county.

Status: Ahearing was held on Wednesday of this week in the House Local Government committee. MML,Municipal League of Metro St Louis, and the city of Moberly testified in opposition. Testifying in favor was the State Treasurer's office, the Show-Me Institute, and the New Century Foundation.

Talking Points:

  • HB 2242 singles out municipalities and should include all public entities, such as the state of Missouri, counties and special districts.
  • HB 2242 is an unfunded mandate that cost cities and taxpayers more than just a “token” amount.
  • Again, despite the claims of bill supporters, it takes more than a “click” of a computer key to provide the excessive amount of information mandated by this bill.

 

 

Premption of Municipal Gross Receipts Tax and Occupation Licenses

HB 1587 (Rep. Helms) prohibits municipalities from enacting any new occupation/business licenses and caps existing licenses at twenty-five dollars per year. Most municipal utility/telecommunication gross receipts taxes are based on their business licensing authority, therefore, this bill would also prohibit new gross receipts taxes and cap current ones at the twenty-five dollar level.

Interestingly, this bill was not assigned to the House Local Government Committee, but placed in the House Professional Registration and Licensing Committee – not a committee normally assigned local government bills.

Status:HB 1587has been assigned to the House Rules - Administrative Oversight Committee. No action was taken this week.

 

 

Prevailing Wage Bills
SB 688 (Sater) was voted "do pass"out of the Senate General Laws Committee. This bill exempts maintenance and repair from prevailing wage.

The House Economic Development Committee heldhearingson HB 1436 (Rep.
Love), HB 1621 (Rep. Rehder) and HB 1729 (Rep.Justus). All these billsrepeal prevailing wage.

Status:HCS/HB 1729 was voted "Do Pass" by the House Rules Committee for Legislative Oversight.

Action: Tell your representatives and senators how prevailing wage affects public work projects in your city.

 

 

Historic Preservation Tax Credits
The Senate Local Government and Elections Committee voted out a committee substitute for SB 590 . The Senate Committee Substitute (SCS) for SB 590 made three changes to the original bill.The substitute bill changed the cap from $50 million to $70 million (The current historic preservation tax credit cap is $140 million) ; retained the control of all historic preservation tax credits with the Department of Economic Development but added the provision to "consider" input from local municipalities; and prohibits tax creditsfor new non-income producing single-family, owner-occupied residential projects.

Status: Placed on the Senate Calendar for Perfection; once the bill is perfected, it cannot be changed.

 

 

Important Legislative Dates:

 

March 2018

1 – Last Day to Introduce Senate Bills

1 – Last Day to Introduce House Bills

15 – Last Day to Place Senate Consent Bills on the Senate Calendar

15 – Spring Break Begins Upon Adjournment

26 – Session Reconvenes

April 2018

2 – Easter Holiday – No Session

12 – Last Day to Place House Consent Bills on the Senate Calendar
May 2018
11 – Appropriations Bills Must Be “Truly Agreed to and Finally Passed”
18 – Session Ends – 6:00 p.m.
30 – Constitutional Adjournment

July 2018

14 – Deadline for Governor to Sign or Veto Legislation

August 2018
28 – Effective Date of Most Bills (unless otherwise specified)


Key Legislative Contact Information

 


 

 February 16, 2018

Wireless Facilities Infrastructure Bill
HB 1991 and SB 837 bills attempts to set up a process for wireless telecommunications providers to deploy small cell wireless facilities throughout the state.We are continuing to negotiatewith the sponsor and proponents to address municipal concerns.

HB 1991 (Rep. Rhoads)
Status: The House Utilities Committee voted out a committee substitute bill (HCS) for HB 1991 on Monday, February 12. The committee reported HCS/HB 1991 to the House floor with a “Do Pass” recommendation. A number of the changes made by the committee are amendments proposed by MML.

SB 837
(Sen. Rowden)
Status: Hearing conducted by the Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and the Environment Committee on February 7. The committee voted out SB 837 to the Senate floor, without amendments, with a "Do Pass" recommendation. The cable industry has floated languageto reduce the video franchise fees to 1% and may try to amend SB 837.

Talking Points:
Municipalities must retain management and oversight of the rights of way (ROW) to insure:
o streets and sidewalks are not obstructed and are maintained in a safe manner;
o that essential public utilities are not damaged or adversely affected;
o that use of ROW remains nondiscriminatory, with no special privileges granted to one type of ROW user;
o municipal taxes and fees are preserved; and
o fees for use of municipal poles and structures in the ROW fairly compensate municipalities for the cost of inspections and maintenance of those facilities.

Action Alert: Urge your representatives and senators to protect municipal management over the ROW and to support MML amendments when they come up on the floor. Also, urge your representatives and senators to oppose any amendments that limit or eliminate municipal video franchise fees.

 

Municipal Court Legislation
SB 553 (Sen. Dixon) addresses many of the concerns from law enforcement and municipal courts from the passage of SB 5 (2015) and SB 572 (2016). The bill repeals provisions stating that failure to appear procedures in moving traffic violation cases that include driving license suspension, shall not apply to minor traffic violations. Likewise, a provision prohibiting a municipal judge from serving as a municipal judge in more than five municipalities is repealed. The terms "annual general operating revenue," "minor traffic violation," and "municipal ordinance violation," as applied in provisions regarding the assessment of fines in minor traffic violation and municipal ordinance violation cases, are modified. The bill repeals a provision prohibiting defendants in minor traffic violation or municipal ordinance violation cases from being placed in confinement for failure to pay a fine unless such nonpayment violates terms of probation or unless due process procedures are followed. Under this bill, if such defendant fails to appear and the
court finds there is not good cause for failing to appear, then the current limitations regarding fines and confinement shall not apply.

Status:The Senate Judiciary Committee conducted a hearing for SB 553 on January 29. No action taken by the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Action: Contact members of the Senate Judiciary Committee and urge their support for the bill.

SB 692 (Sen. Emery) also addresses many of the concerns created by the passage of SB 5 (2015) and SB 572 (2016). The bill modifies the definition of the terms "annual general operating revenue" and "minor traffic violation" as applied in provisions regarding the assessment of fines in minor traffic violation and municipal ordinance violation cases. "Annual general operating revenue" now includes, rather than excludes, designated sales or use taxes, restricted user fees, grant funds, funds expended for technological assistance and other revenue designated for a specific purpose. The term "minor traffic violation" now excludes, rather than includes, amended charges.

The bill increases municipal fines and court costs to $500, rather than $225, for minor traffic violations. For multiple municipal ordinance violations committed within a 12-month period, a court shall not assess a fine and court costs more than $300 for second offense ordinance violations, rather than $275, $400 for third offense ordinance violations, rather than $350, and $500 for fourth and subsequent ordinance violations, rather than $450. SB 692 repeals certain exemptions from paying court costs in minor traffic violations and municipal ordinance violations for defendants who are indigent.

This bill also reinstates the previous 30 percent limitation on municipal income that was lowered to be 20 percent in 2016 by SB 5, except in St. Louis County, where the limitation remains at 12.5 percent.

Finally, the bill repeals provisions that establish procedures to dissolve a municipal government when it fails to remit the revenue collected from certain fines, penalties, and forfeitures more than 20 percent to the Department of Revenue.

Status: The Senate Local Government and Elections Committee conducted a hearing for SB 692 on Tuesday, February 13 . No action taken.

Action: Contact members of the Senate Local Government and Elections Committee and urge their support for the bill.

 

Missouri Municipal Government Expenditure Database
HB 2242(Rep. Wiemann) establishes the "Missouri Municipal Government Expenditure Database," to be maintained by State Treasurer Eric Schmitt. The database must include extensive information about a given municipality's expenditures and the vendors to whom payments were made. Municipalities with websites must provide a link to the database. A municipality must provide the information to State Treasurer Eric Schmitt on a quarterly basis or be fined $100 per day. The fine will be collected by offsetting sales and use tax distributions due to the municipality and will be distributed to the schools of the county.

Status: Ahearing was held on Wednesday of this week in the House Local Government committee. MML,Municipal League of Metro St Louis, and the city of Moberly testified in opposition. Testifying in favor was the State Treasurer's office, the Show-Me Institute, and the New Century Foundation.

Talking Points:

  • HB 2242 singles out municipalities and should include all public entities, such as the state of Missouri, counties and special districts.
  • HB 2242 is an unfunded mandate that cost cities and taxpayers more than just a “token” amount.
  • Again, despite the claims of bill supporters, it takes more than a “click” of a computer key to provide the excessive amount of information mandated by this bill.

Action: Contact members of the House Local Government Committee and urge them to oppose HB 2242.

 

Premption of Municipal Gross Receipts Tax and Occupation Licenses

HB 1587 (Rep. Helms) prohibits municipalities from enacting any new occupation/business licenses and caps existing licenses at twenty-five dollars per year. Most municipal utility/telecommunication gross receipts taxes are based on their business licensing authority, therefore, this bill would also prohibit new gross receipts taxes and cap current ones at the twenty-five dollar level.

Interestingly, this bill was not assigned to the House Local Government Committee, but placed in the House Professional Registration and Licensing Committee – not a committee normally assigned local government bills.

Status:HB 1587has been assigned to the House Rules - Administrative Oversight Committee. No action was taken this week.

 

Prevailing Wage Bills
SB 688 (Sater) was voted "do pass"out of the Senate General Laws Committee. This bill exempts maintenance and repair from prevailing wage.

The House Economic Development Committee heldhearingson HB 1436 (Rep.
Love), HB 1621 (Rep. Rehder) and HB 1729 (Rep.Justus). All these billsrepeal prevailing wage.
The committee voted out a House committee substitute (HCS) for HB 1729 with a "Do Pass" recommendation. HCS/HB 1729 was referred to the House Rules Committee for Legislative Oversight.

Action: Tell your representatives and senators how prevailing wage affects public work projects in your city.

 

 

Historic Preservation Tax Credits
The Senate Local Government and Elections Committee voted out a committee substitute for SB 590 . The Senate Committee Substitute (SCS) for SB 590 made three changes to the original bill.The substitute bill changed the cap from $50 million to $70 million (The current historic preservation tax credit cap is $140 million) ; retained the control of all historic preservation tax credits with the Department of Economic Development but added the provision to "consider" input from local municipalities; and prohibits tax creditsfor new non-income producing single-family, owner occupied residential projects.

February 9, 2018 

 

Wireless Facilities Infrastructure Bill - HB 1991 (Rhoads)

No action was taken this week by the House Utilities Committee onHB 1991, sponsored by Representative Shawn Rhoads (R-West Plains).The legislation attempts to set up a process for wireless telecommunications providers to deploy small cell wireless facilities throughout the state.


We are continuing to negotiatewith the sponsor and proponents to address municipal concerns. An executive session has been set for this bill by the House Utilities Committee for Monday, February 12 at 2:30 pm.

 

 

Municipal Court Legislation
The Senate Judiciary Committee heard SB553 (Dixon) that addresses many of the concerns from law enforcement and municipal courts from the passage of SB5(2015) and SB572(2016).

Status: No action taken by the Senate Judiciary Committee. The committee hearing was cancelled do to a filibuster in the Senate that began Wednesday evening.

Action: Contact members of the Judiciary Committee and urge their support for the bill.

 

 

Missouri Municipal Government Expenditure Database

HB 2242(Rep. Wiemann) establishes the "Missouri Municipal Government Expenditure Database," to be maintained by State Treasurer Eric Schmitt. The database must include extensive information about a given municipality's expenditures and the vendors to whom payments were made. Municipalities with websites must provide a link to the database. A municipality must provide the information to Treasurer Eric Schmitt on a quarterly basis or be fined $100 per day. The fine will be collected by offsetting sales and use tax distributions due to the municipality and will be distributed to the schools of the county.

Status: Ahearing was held on Wednesday of this week in the House Local Government committee. MML,Municipal League of Metro St Louis, and the city of Moberly testified in opposition. Testifying in favor was the State Treasurer's office, the Show-Me Institute, and the New Century Foundation.

 

 

Preemptionof Municipal Gross Receipts Tax and Occupation Licenses

HB 1587 (Rep. Helms) prohibits municipalities from enacting any new occupation/business licenses and caps existing licenses at twenty-five dollars per year. Most municipal utility/telecommunication gross receipts taxes are based on their business licensing authority, therefore, this bill would also prohibit new gross receipts taxes and cap current ones at the twenty-five dollar level.

Interestingly, this bill was not assigned to the House Local Government Committee, but placed in the House Professional Registration and Licensing Committee – not a committee normally assigned local government bills.

Status:
HB 1587has been assigned to the House Rules - Administrative Oversight Committee. No action was taken this week.

 

 

Prevailing Wage Bills

SB 688 (Sater) was voted "do pass"out of the Senate General Laws Committee. This bill exempts maintenance and repair from prevailing wage.

The House Economic Development Committee heldhearingson HB 1436-Love,HB 1621-Rehder, andHB 1729-Justusdealing with prevailing wage.

 

 

General Assembly Moving Two Tax Credit Bills

Senate Bill 590, sponsored by Senator Dan Hegeman (R-Cosby), is currently on the Senate’s Perfection Calendar awaiting debate by the full Senate. Currently, the Department of Economic Development can issue historic preservation tax credits in an amount up to $140 million annually. This bill would reduce the annual cap on these credits to $70 million. It also makes changes to the Capitol Complex Tax Credit Act and the Public Buildings Preservation Tax Credit Act.

In the House, Representative Kevin Engler (R-Farmington) is handling the HCS HBs 1288, 1370 & 2050. The bill initially dealt with extending the sunset on maternity home tax credits. This tax credit, as well as several other benevolent tax credit programs, will expire in 2019. Through a House Committee Substitute and several amendments adopted during the perfection process, many of the benevolent tax credits set to expire in 2019 have been added to the bill in an effort to try and extend them this session rather than waiting until next year when it could be more difficult. One of the programs added to this legislation is the home accessibility tax credit program which allows people to receive a tax credit for modifying their home to make it more accessible. This enables people with disabilities to remain in their homes longer. The bill also includes a provision to increase the tax credit from $100,000 to $200,000 annually. The bill still needs one more vote in the House before heading to the Senate.

 

 

February 2, 2018 

Wireless Facilities Infrastructure Bill -HB 1991(Rhoads)

No action was taken this week by TheHouse Utilities CommitteeonHB 1991, sponsored byRepresentative Shawn Rhoads (R-West Plains). Several people showed up to the committee to share testimony on the bill. The legislation attempts to set up a process for wireless telecommunications providers to deploy small cell wireless facilities throughout the state.

 

We expect the bill to be reported out ofCommitteenext Wednesday. We are continuing to negotiatewith the sponsor and proponents to address municipal concerns.

Municipal Court Legislation
TheSenate Judiciary CommitteeheardSB553(Dixon) that addresses many of the concerns from law enforcement and municipal courts from the passage ofSB5(2015)andSB572(2016).

Status:Expected to be reported out of Committee next week.

Action:Contact members of theJudiciary Committeeand urge their support for the bill.
ACTION ALERT: Premption of Municipal Gross Receipts Tax and Occupation Licenses

HB 1587(Rep. Helms) prohibits municipalities from enacting any new occupation/business licenses and caps existing licenses at twenty-five dollars per year. Most municipal utility/telecommunication gross receipts taxes are based on their business licensing authority;therefore, this bill would also prohibit new gross receipts taxes and cap current ones at the twenty-five dollar level.

Interestingly, this bill was not assigned to the House Local Government Committee, but placed in the House Professional Registration and Licensing Committee – not a committee normally assigned local government bills.


Status:HB 1587will be heard in theHouse Rules - Administrative Oversight Committee.

Action:Contact yourstate representativeas soon as possible and urge themto vote againstHB 1587when it comes up for a vote on the House floor.


Talking Points:
  • Licensing local businesses and occupational licenses are used to insure compliance with local public health and safety regulations.
  • Utility gross receipts taxes are levied based on a municipality's business license authority and are an important source of revenue to fund essential local services.
  • The state of Missouri relies on local business license issuance to identify companies that are evading state taxes.
Hearings To Be Held on Prevailing Wage Bills
TheHouse Economic Development Committeewill hold hearings on Tuesday at 5 p.m. on several bills dealing with prevailingwage:
House Hearings
HB 1436-Love PREVAILING WAGE
 
HB 1621-Rehder PREVAILING WAGE
 
HB 1729-Justus PREVAILING WAGE

 

January 26, 2018

Hearing Held on Wireless Facilities Infrastructure Bill -HB 1991(Rhoads)

The House Utilities Committee heardHB 1991, sponsored by Representative Shawn Rhoads (R-West Plains), on Wednesday evening. Several people showed up to the committee to share testimony on the bill. The legislation attempts to set up a process for wireless telecommunications providers to deploy small cell wireless facilities throughout the state. The providers testified that they are prepared to make a significant investment in Missouri that would surpass $2 billion and likely create over 10,000 jobs. Similar legislation has passed in other states and 18 states will consider it this year. Several witnesses spoke in opposition to the bill citing concerns about conflicts in the definitions, access to the rights-of-way, fees, the ability to approve or deny an application, and the time constraints for processing the application.

 

The municipalities have been working with the providers in order to address their specific concerns. Bill Ojile, an attorney for the Missouri Municipal League, and Municipal League of Metro St. Louis, met with the House and Senate bill sponsors, as well as the providers, prior to the hearing in order to outline the cities’ specific concerns and propose amendments. He also outlined those concerns during his testimony to the committee.The groups will meet again next week to talk further.

 

Other opposition to the bill expressed at the hearing came from the Missouri Cable Telecommunications Association, the city attorney for Jefferson City, the Missouri Public Utilities Alliance, representatives from individual cities throughout the state, and the director of Kirkwood Electric.

 

The cable industry has raised concerns that the bill provides unequal protection because cable pays a franchise fee, but wireless providers would not have to pay that fee. Wireless contends, however, that they would be subject to a gross receipts tax. City utilities say that they have concerns about attaching these structures to their poles because it could create safety issues and cause residents to experience other outages, i.e. electric. The director of Kirkwood Electric opposed the bill because they are currently working with two wireless providers and say that their negotiations have gone very well resulting in enhanced service for their residents. He is concerned that the bill hamstrings cities and utilities by taking away their ability to negotiate with providers to reach a resolution that is in the best interests of all parties.

 

Committee members seem torn between the potential economic benefit of the bill and overall public safety. As has been said many times about this legislation, the devil is in the details, and this bill still needs some work. The Chairman of the Committee announced that the groups should all continue to work together and submit language for the committee to consider at a later date. A similar bill has been filed in theSenate (SB 837), but it is not yet set for a hearing.

ACTION ALERT: Premption of Municipal Gross Receipts Tax and Occupation Licenses

HB 1587(Rep. Helms) prohibits municipalities from enacting any new occupation/business licenses and caps existing licenses at twenty-five dollars per year. Most municipal utility/telecommunication gross receipts taxes are based on their business licensing authority;therefore, this bill would also prohibit new gross receipts taxes and cap current ones at the twenty-five dollar level.

Interestingly, this bill was not assigned to the House Local Government Committee, but placed in the House Professional Registration and Licensing Committee – not a committee normally assigned local government bills.


Status:HB 1587has been reported out of the House Professional Registration and Licensing Committee with a "Do Pass" recommendation.

Action: contact yourstate representativeas soon as possible and urge them to vote againstHB 1587when it comes up for a vote on the House floor.


Talking Points:
  • Licensing local businesses and occupational licenses are used to insure compliance with local public health and safety regulations.
  • Utility gross receipts taxes are levied based on a municipality's business license authority and are an important source of revenue to fund essential local services.
  • The state of Missouri relies on local business license issuance to identify companies that are evading state taxes.
Hearings Held on Prevailing Wage Bills
Senate Hearings
This week the Senate General Laws Committee conducted a hearing onHB 555(Sen. Brown),SB 599(Sen. Schatz) andSB 688(Sen. Sater). These bills present three different approaches for "fixing" Missouri's broken prevailing wage law:
  • Senator Brown's bill it a total repeal of the prevailing wage;
  • Senator Schatz's measure exempts all public works projects of $500,000 or less from the prevailing wage law and sets the county average wage as established by the Missouri Department of Economic Development as the prevailing wage;
  • and, Senator Sater’s bill exempts maintenance projects from prevailing wage.
House Hearings
The House Economic Development Committee also scheduled a hearing on three bills that reform the prevailing law. However, the committee could only complete a hearing on two bills,HB 1313(Rep. White) andHB 1594(Rep. Davis).
  • Rep. White's bill grants a prevailing wage exemption to projects funded by housing tax credit. Rep. Davis' billallows cities and counties to opt out of prevailing wage.
  • HB 1272(Rep. Lant) exempting public works projects under $750,000 or less from prevailing wage was not heard.

 

January 19, 2018

Deployment of Wireless Facilities in Municipal Rights of Way - Hearing Scheduled for HB 1991

HB 1991 limits a municipality’s ability to control the placement of wireless antennas and “adjacent” equipment on municipal rights of way. The bill gives wireless companies the right to collocate wireless facilities on municipally owned poles, facilities and traffic devices located in the right of way. The bill also establishes permitting and fee requirements. As currently written, HB 1991 could be interrupted to exempt wireless companies from some generally applied taxes and fees; such as property and gross receipts taxes.
The MML has prepared amendments to HB 1991 that address the discrepancies we see in the bill.

Status: House Utilities Committee hearing  scheduled for Wednesday, January 24 at 5:00 p.m. in House Hearing Room 5. 

Talking Points: 

  • The definition of right of way is too broad. Includes utility easement and "similar property" in the definition.
  • The bill does not protect residential areas from unsightly equipment placement.
  • Wireless companies are given preferential treatment over other right-o- way users.
  • Language in the bill is too broad and may eliminate all fees, taxes (including property ad sales taxes) that other right-of-way users pay.
  • Wireless companies receive special permit privileges under the bill.
  • The bill gives rights to not only wireless companies, but also companies building wireless infrastructure in the right of way.

Action:
Contact members of the House Utilities Committee and urge them to vote to accept MML amendments to HB 1991.

 

Senate Committee Hears Sales Tax Cap/Tax Bill

The Senate Committee on Ways and Means met on Tuesday to hear two of the tax proposals sponsored by Senators Bill Eigel (R-St. Charles) and Andrew Koenig (R-Manchester).  The bills were presented simultaneously and witnesses were given the opportunity to testify on both at the same time.  While the bills share certain things in common, such as drastically changing the state’s current tax structures and tax credit programs, they also tackle different tax issues.  For example, Senator Eigel’s bill (SB 617) attempts to decouple the MO standard deduction from the federal deduction and sets the amount of the deduction at 2016 tax year levels, while Senator Koenig’s SB 611 would place a cap on the combined rate of local sales taxes at 7.275% and allocate up to $40 million in corporate tax deductions for the Senior Services Protection Program.  Both bills attempt to increase the fuel tax, cap tax credits, repeal the timely filing allowance (although Senator Koenig’s would only repeal it on income tax and not corporate tax), and require the Department of Revenue to enter into the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement.  

 

We are told that the Chairman of the Committee will likely allow the committee to vote out some version of both bills, but he is not inclined to make changes to the tax credit programs.  The problem with removing the tax credit programs from the discussion is that the sponsors are attempting to make their bills revenue neutral.  Cutting spending on the tax credit programs is a big part of that balancing act.  Senator Eigel’s bill will likely focus on changes to the tax code, and Senator Koenig’s bill will potentially focus on MO entering into the Streamlined Sales & Use Tax Agreement. 

 

The bill sponsors are working on committee substitutes now that we should see by next week. Senator Cierpiot (R-Lee’s Summit) is working on tax proposal #3 that will be introduced soon.

 

1/12/2018

Second Week of the 2018 Legislative Session Concludes
Many of the bills that have been introduced so far this session are repeat legislation from the 2017 session. It is likely that bills from last session will receive expedited committee action. In fact both the House and Senate began committee hearings this week with bills carried over from 2017.

Committee hearings will be the main legislative activity for the next six week, with a number of bills of municipal interest being heard. League staff will reach out to municipal officials to contact their legislators on many of these important legislative measures. Watch for MML Legislative Alerts and other requests to contact your legislator. Please do not hesitate to contact League staff if you have any questions, information or concerns about any bills being consider this session. Also, let us know when you contact your legislator on a particular bill and how they responded to your contact.

Next week is a short week in Jefferson City. On Monday, state offices will be closed and the Legislature will not be in session in observance of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. The House and Senate will convene on Tuesday at 4 p.m.

 

Municipal Bills Heard in House Election Committee
HB 1446 (Rep. Eggleston)
Sponsored by Rep. Eggleston
A carry over bill from last session, expands the existing law by allowing candidates in municipalities with populations of 2,000 or less to assume office without holding an election if the election is uncontested and the number of candidates equal the number of open positions. Current law allows municipalities with 1,000 or less persons to forego holding an election when all open seats are uncontested. This bill was voted out of the Elections Committee last year and passed in the House, but ran into opposition in the Senate. The Election Committee heard another bill that was much more contentious.

HB 1234 (Rep. Stacy)
Sponsored by Rep. Stacy
Requires elections to create and elect members of the board of directors of a transportation development district (TDD) to be held on general election days, removing primary and special election dates as an option. The bill also eliminates mail-in voting and removes the provision allowing non-resident property owners to participate in TDD elections.

 

Action Needed
The Senate Ways and Means Committee will hold a hearing on SB 611 (Senator Koenig) on Tuesday, January 16, at 2:00 p.m.

SB 611 makes a number of significant changes to current state tax statutes. Of utmost importance to municipal officials is a provision that caps local sales taxes rate at 7.275 percent (inclusive of municipal sales taxes; county sales taxes, and special districts sales taxes; such as ambulance, fire or others authorized to levy a sales tax). This is a very harmful provision that needs to be removed from the bill.


Please contact members of the Senate Ways and Means Committee as soon as possible to urge them to oppose the cap on local sales taxes and ask them to remove the provision from the bill.
Be sure to let committee members know how this local sales tax cap would affect your city and of any voter-approved bonds that would be jeopardized by imposing a local sales tax cap.

Other provisions of the bill include: personal and corporate state income tax cuts. It directs the Missouri Department of Revenue to enter into the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement with other states, and establishes caps on historic preservation and low-income tax credits.

 

Municipal Court Legislation
SB 553 (Sen. Dixon)
Sponsored by Senator Dixon
Fixes many of the municipal court problems caused by ill-conceived legislation from past sessions; SB 5 (2015) and SB 572 (2016). Senator Dixon has indicated that SB 553 is his priority bill and the Judiciary Committee will be scheduling a hearing soon. Senator Dixon is the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

MML LEGISLATIVE ALERT -  1/11/2018

The Senate Ways and Means Committee will hold a hearing on SB 611 (Senator Koenig) on Tuesday, January 16 at 2:00 p.m.

 

SB 611 makes a number of significant changes to current state tax statutes. Of utmost importance to municipal officials is a provision that caps all local sales taxes at 7.275 percent (including municipal sales taxes; county sales taxes, and special districts sales taxes; such as ambulance, fire or others authorized to levy a sales tax).  This is a very harmful provision that needs to be removed from the bill.

 

Other provisions of the bill include: personal and corporate state income tax cuts. It directs the Missouri Department of Revenue to enter into the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement with other states, and establishes caps on historic preservation and low-income tax credits.

 

Contact your State Senator to urge their opposition to the local sales tax cap in SB 611.

 

Second Session of the 99th General Assembly Convenes

The first week of the 2018 legislative session has come and gone without too much controversy, but the House and Senate are as distinct as ever. Speaker Todd Richardson (R-Poplar Bluff) is starting his final session in the House. In his speech he talked about the many legislative accomplishments he has seen during his tenure and called on all members of the House to work together toward the common goal of doing what is best for Missourians. The House Republicans said they will focus on legislation relating to human trafficking, banning lobbyist gifts, hair braiding, tax policy, tort reform, and labor reform. House Democrats listed their top issues as education, ethics reform, restoration of the anti-discrimination laws that were modified last session, and resolving the opioid epidemic.

Senate President Pro Tem Ron Richard (R-Joplin) will also depart the Legislature after this session due to term limits. He said that the Senate will focus on regulatory reform in order to make Missouri a state that is attractive to businesses. He also said they will work on tax reform, prevailing wage, funding for in-home and nursing home services, and tax reform. He mentioned that they will proceed with caution on tax cuts because he does not want to see Missouri end up like Kansas did when they went too far in cutting taxes.

 

21st Century Transportation Task Force Releases Report

The much anticipated report of the transportation task force was released on Tuesday during a press conference at the capitol. Additional funding for state roads and bridges would come from increased user fees. If the gas tax were raised by ten cents and the diesel tax by twelve cents, the state would take in an additional $430 million annually. These increases must be approved by the voters so lawmakers are being asked to pass a resolution that places this proposal on the ballot.

 

In addition, the task force has recommended that the registration fees for hybrid and electric vehicles be doubled. They also included ideas about changing the current system by tying registration fees to fuel mileage or imposing a tax that would be charged at electric recharging stations. These ideas are in line with the concept of keeping fees tied to actual vehicle use on the roadways.

 

Other recommendations include: enabling political subdivisions to enact local construction excise taxes to be used for transportation; the use of express managed lanes in metro areas to increase highway capacity, reduce congestion, and improve travel reliability; encouraging the legislature to evaluate greater flexibility in enabling state P3 (public-private-partnerships) legislation for transportation projects; advance safety measures including legislation requiring primary seatbelt use and enforcement, enhanced distracted driving legislation (a/k/a prohibition on texting while driving for all drivers), graduated driver’s license training requirements; and eliminate or reduce the two percent timely filing discount for retailers paying the state sales tax. 

 

 

 

Important Legislative Dates:

January 2018

3 – General Assembly Convenes – Noon

10 – State of the State Address – Joint Session in House Chamber – 7:00 pm

15 – Martin Luther King Day – No Session

 

March 2018

1 – Last Day to Introduce Senate Bills

1 – Last Day to Introduce House Bills

15 – Last Day to Place Senate Consent Bills on the Senate Calendar

15 – Spring Break Begins Upon Adjournment

26 – Session Reconvenes

 

April 2018

2 – Easter Holiday – No Session

12 – Last Day to Place House Consent Bills on the Senate Calendar

May 2018
11 – Appropriations Bills Must Be “Truly Agreed to and Finally Passed”
18 – Session Ends – 6:00 p.m.
30 – Constitutional Adjournment

 

July 2018

14 – Deadline for Governor to Sign or Veto Legislation

August 2018
7 – Primary Election
28 – Effective Date of Most Bills (unless otherwise specified)


Key Legislative Contact Information

 

 


Key Legislative Contact Information

House Leadership                    Senate Leadership           

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Key Legislative Contact Information

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House Committees                  Senate Committees

House Members                       Senate Members

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